>@Shutterstock
©Shutterstock
  • The EU bank will invest €146 million in Hungary to support the procurement of vital COVID-19 medical supplies and equipment.
  • Last year, the EIB invested €162.5 million to support Hungary’s medical sector in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The loan beneficiary is Országos Kórházi Főigazgatóság, the national hospital management agency of Hungary.

The European Investment Bank (EIB), the bank of the European Union, and the Ministry of Finance of Hungary have signed a €146 million loan to support the country’s healthcare sector with the procurement of medical supplies, mobile units and a wide range of equipment.

The loan also covers the procurement of personal protection equipment for medical workers and emergency responders.

The operation will benefit the National Directorate General for Hospitals (Országos Kórházi Főigazgatóság), Hungary’s national agency for hospital management.

EIB Vice-President Teresa Czerwińska, who is responsible for operations in Hungary, said: EIB is very proud of its continuing support for the protection of lives in Hungary from the coronavirus and, equally, of its support for the Government of Hungary in the efforts to tackle the pandemic. The loan we have signed is a part of EIB’s tailor-made response to COVID-19. It demonstrates our efforts to strengthen the European healthcare systems and to ensure that all of our citizens and medical workers are equipped with the best possible protective measures. We stand ready to continue helping Hungary to recover from COVID-19 and to finance eligible projects serving that purpose. I would like to thank the Deputy Prime Minister and Finance minister Varga for the excellent cooperation on this important operation.

Mihály Varga, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of Hungary, said: “This is the second EIB loan provided to strengthen the Hungarian healthcare system and its capacity to protect Hungarians from the COVID-19 pandemic. Now Hungary is prepared for a possible fourth wave of the epidemic. Last year, the EU bank provided €162.5 million to Hungary covering COVID-19-related procurements, bringing the total EIB support for increased resilience of the national healthcare system in the country to €308.5 million.”

Support for the COVID-19 health emergency in Hungary and the European Union demonstrates the EIB’s readiness to mitigate the impact of the ongoing epidemic outbreak in the region, and complements and reinforces similar measures introduced by the European Commission.

EIB in Hungary:

EIB lending commitments in Hungary since the start of the Bank’s activity in the country are currently close to €21.6 billion. Between 2010 and 2020 alone the EIB signed for support worth €11.2 billion. EIB operations cover important sectors of the Hungarian economy, including transport, the environment, energy infrastructure, manufacturing and services.

Another key component of the Bank’s activity in Hungary is the promotion of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), by increasing SME access to long-term financing through local financial institutions. Since 2001, the EU bank has supported 5 172 Hungarian SMEs, sustaining 263 767 jobs in the process.